Tetra Tech worked in Albania to build robust, democratic local governments and to institutionalize equitable structures for sustainable development.

Working toward membership of the European Union (EU), Albania’s eligibility greatly depends on its ability to establish equitable systems of local governance at European standards. To meet these milestones, Albania needs a robust local government system founded on transparent finances and able to provide essential public services, regardless of location. Improved infrastructure also mitigates exposure to radicalization and extremism, a threat exacerbated in Albania by the marginalization of vulnerable groups. The Planning and Local Governance Project (PLGP), funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), aimed to provide technical assistance and training to the Government of Albania (GOA) and local institutions to help them successfully implement decentralization, improve service delivery, and build resilient communities through sustainable development policies.

Under PLGP, Tetra Tech worked toward four main objectives:

Implement Effective Decentralization Policies and Legislation

Tetra Tech helped the GOA make informed decisions through inclusive consultations to achieve more equitable resource distribution and service delivery, and promoted legislation requiring such consultations.

I am happy to express my appreciation and gratitude to the USAID Planning and Local Governance Project today, and specifically for the Women, Peace and Security Activity. First of all, I really appreciate that this program has given a great contribution to the economic and social life in Albania for 9 years in a row. In the last two years, it placed particular focus on women and their roles, on building a peaceful and democratic society, and on women’s economic empowerment in particular…these complementary endeavors have had a positive impact and I am sure they will serve for other projects, whether local or national, supported by donors or by LGUs on their own.

Eglantina Gjermeni, Member of Albanian Parliament and Head of the Parliamentary Subcommittee on Gender Equality
Improve Local Governance

We reinforced local governments to improve tax collection, increase local government revenues, enable asset management through information and communications technology, and build the predictability, accuracy, and transparency of budgetary processes. We also raised citizens’ awareness of government functions and facilitated their access to participate in decision-making processes, regardless of their gender.

Improve Management of Local Services

Tetra Tech assisted in ensuring laws, policies, procedures, and services (i.e. water and waste management) are consistent with EU standards. We assisted governments and supervisory boards to develop skills, define roles, and build their knowledge to manage and oversee jointly owned utility companies.

Strengthen Civic Engagement and Build Resilient Communities

We reinforced Albania’s national and local efforts to prevent violent extremism and facilitated the signing of the European Charter for Gender Equality by local government partners. PLGP increased women’s agency through economic initiatives, advocated for institutionalization of Gender Equality Officers, and empowered youth as civic leaders.